What the Green Arrows Can Lie About
Explaining why something is down, or, in other words, why there are red arrows in the analytics report, is one of the hardest things we do as a full-service business. Many of our clients just do not want to see red arrows when working in the very competitive automobile industry. To operate a fast-paced company effectively, the majority of them are extremely busy and work nonstop. This implies that they make snap decisions every day of the week.
As a result, whenever they see a red arrow or a decline in analytics of any type, their minds start to flare up and they start to consider making cuts to the budget or switching agencies. The fact of the matter is that the digital world is always evolving. Having green arrows for every single thing you track in Adwords, Analytics, and other media is all but impossible. Businesses would live in a utopia (which is what we strive for every day) if it were simple to turn all the arrows green. Once more, the truth is that metrics cannot always be in the black because of the deep, dark pit of never-ending branches that is the online world.
Inside the dealer world, we pursue truth rather than color. Red and green have become so obviously black and white that I felt it was worthwhile to write about them. It simply makes the digital realm more difficult to comprehend when red and green are alternately considered to be good and negative. This is particularly true when dealing with a client who simply wants to go forward and see green.
I’ll use a straightforward example to demonstrate this. The usual rule of thumb when it comes to bounce rates is that you want them to be low. The percentage of visitors to your site that leave without taking any further action, such as clicking to another page, is known as the bounce rate. I’ve come across websites that push visitors to interact with the site by placing their phone number on a secondary page rather than on the home page. The landing page becomes less relevant while the bounce rate is reduced.
This technique is comparable to keeping the milk and bread in the back of the grocery store when customers want to quickly get their purchases and “bounce” out. If you’ve observed, many extremely prosperous supermarkets now feature bread and milk up front so you may “buy and bounce.” The best practices for user experience in the online world can be applied to the example of bread and milk. Relevance is everything in Google, and Facebook just declared that it would update its algorithms in 2018 to be more relevant. Giving customers what they want while letting them leave if they choose is a concept that is becoming more popular both online and in traditional brick and mortar establishments.
Returning to bounce rate, if our agency places a consumer on a page that is highly relevant to their needs and enables them to find the information they seek quickly and easily, they are likely to do so and leave the site. The bounce rate has now increased, as indicated by the red arrow on the agency’s report card. I contend that client trust, satisfaction, and the possibility of a return trip have all increased. I’ll state this out loud: Many agencies modify the platform to make the arrow appear green. They might bring a consumer to a page that is unrelated to what they were looking for, increasing the bounce rate, pages per session, and time spent on the site, all of which produce green arrows on the analytics report.
Where, then, is the lie? A falsehood would be told if the truth had been changed to show green arrows in order to appease a client. Clicks to new pages, time spent on the site, and all the other metrics we pay attention to will naturally rise if we genuinely believe that the landing page is pertinent and will lure a consumer in. Excellent use of digital marketing. It is ineffective to use the system to deceive people; they are savvy and will recognize it, just like the supermarket that keeps its milk and bread at the back. They’ll soon begin doing all of their shopping at the establishment they are familiar with, which is the establishment that fulfills their initial desires.
I dare you to consider the cause and impact of the red and green arrows when looking at your reports, without getting too into the lies the green arrows can reveal. Let me give you an illustration of what I mean by that. Let’s say that despite sending an email blast last month, you didn’t this month, which is why your sessions are down. Your website had 4,000 hits as a result of the email blast, giving it a positive, green arrow for the month. However, over the same month, the bounce rate increased, while the number of pages per session and average time spent on the site fell. All of these arrows were red. Which month, then, was better? Which month—the one with 9000 visits, which had lower time on site and pages per session and greater bounce rates (red arrows)—was more effective? Or, which month—the one with 5000 visits but green arrows for bounce rate, time on site, and pages per session?
In my opinion, how many automobiles did you sell and what was your return on investment are the two most crucial variables to consider. Since sales volume and net profits are the most significant KPIs, these are the ones I write about most frequently. The uneducated manager or owner will always be frustrated by the shifting green and red arrows. But I believe that you won’t give a damn about the falsehoods the green arrows can tell if you keep net earnings and units sold moving in the right direction.
Back to Blog